Reading/Interest Level: Primary
Author: Nicola Edwards
Illustrator: Lucy Cartwright
Publisher: Little Tiger Press
When the Stars Come Out is a beautifully illustrated book full of fun facts relating to the night. The book explains why the night exists and how people have studied the nighttime sky throughout history. It details what some of the discoveries have been, including why the moon wanes and what the northern lights are. The book answers questions about the earth at night and about humans at night. Many different cultures are mentioned as the book goes over the history of sleep and celebrations of the night. The book explains that though nights are safer nowadays with all the light, the sky has become very polluted by it. We can no longer see the beautiful stars like those before us could. Whenever you are in a place where you can fully appreciate the night, the book urges us, don’t take it for granted.
This book is simply written and covers complex topics in an easy-to-read way. The imagery in the words alone is outstanding and is amplified by the unique illustrations. However, many big words are used so the book might not be suitable for young children. But it could be utilized as a tool to help older children learn new words. Although it is a picture book, there is quite a bit of writing per page, but as the text is spread artistically throughout the illustrations, it doesn’t appear to be very wordy. This book could be used for many purposes, including teaching about the importance of sleep, raising awareness of light pollution, and advocating for the needs of wildlife. The author does well at covering these and many other topics in an inspiring manner. The book reads leaves the reader with a desire to increase their knowledge of the nighttime and spend a little more time appreciating it.